Image Source : PTI (FILE) Jagannath Temple

Puri Jagannath Temple: In its first Cabinet meeting, Odisha’s new BJP government approved a proposal to re-open all four gates of the Shree Jagannath Temple in Puri early on Thursday morning. They also decided to establish a corpus fund for the immediate requirements of the 12th-century shrine.

Addressing a press conference following his first Cabinet meeting, newly elected Odisha Chief Minister Mohan Charan Majhi at the state secretariat Lok Seva Bhawan, said,  “After the formation of new government, a Cabinet meeting was called today. The first proposal in the meeting was to open all four doors of the Lord Jagannath Temple as was demanded by the people. It has been decided that the doors will be opened for devotees from Thursday morning. Secondly, funds are needed for the running and development of the temple. So, we have proposed to develop a corpus fund.”

Opening of gates was in BJP’s election manifesto

Opening all the temple gates was a promise in the BJP’s election manifesto, the Chief Minister said, adding that devotees had been facing problems due to the closure of the gates.

The former BJD administration kept the four gates of the temple closed since the COVID-19 pandemic. The devotees can enter through only one gate and there were demands that all gates be opened.

For the conservation and preservation of the temple, Majhi announced that the Cabinet has decided to establish a corpus fund of Rs 500 crore to address issues related to the shrine.

In response to a question, the Chief Minister said that all ministers would depart for Puri on Wednesday night and stay in the pilgrim town to ensure their presence when all four gates are opened on Thursday morning.

CM Majhi on MSP of paddy

CM Majhi further said that the state government will take measures to increase the minimum support price (MSP) of paddy to Rs 3100 per quintal and the department concerned has been asked to take measures in this regard. He said that a committee will be formed very soon for the implementation of the proposal to increase the MSP for paddy to Rs 3100 per quintal.

This apart, a special policy “Samruddha Krushak Niti Yojana” will be framed to deal with the problems of farmers including the MSP to farmers. “The departments have been asked to prepare a proper guideline and roadmap in this regard and present it before the government. “This will be done within a span of first 100 days of the government,” the Chief Minister said.

Majhi also claimed that efforts of the previous BJD regime for women empowerment and child welfare have failed. “Therefore, the new government will implement the Subhdra Yojana within 100 days under which the women will get a Rs 50,000 cash voucher each. The departments are told to prepare guidelines and roadmaps for the implementation of the Subhadra Yojana,” he added.

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